Tuesday, October 2, 2012

3 Short Paragraphs: Resident Evil: Retribution

2012, Paul WS Anderson (Event Horizon, AVP, DOA) -- cinema

Yes, this definitely joins my list of bad movies that I will probably watch again.  I must admit up front to being a fan of the series having again watched them all to catch up for this one.  Its funny because watching them again, I am always reminded how bad the acting and plots are, which I always seem to forget in the times between.  They are a zombie series based on video games but so very lacking in zombie staples.  These are video game zombies, where they become fodder for the sub-machine guns, as opposed to being slow moving terrifying antagonists for those incapable of defending themselves.  It also lends a little to my love for post-apocalypse, the third in the series ending the world and setting the stage for the rest -- a world that has been destroyed by both the monsters unleashed and the havoc the virus wreaks on the environment.  Not that the movies care about any of this, beyond the third.

In the last movie, we were all gathered on a ship off the coast of LA.  Alice just freed all the people stored inside the ship, who were emerging onto the deck, dazed and confused.  In the distance we can see a flock of attack Ospreys converging on the freighter.  This movie starts with quite the lovely reverse-film credit sequence that sums up how the last movie leads into this one.  You see, they could start the movie right at this sequence with her defending the newly released pawns and defeating the whirly bird armada.  But no, each movie now must begin with Alice naked-but-for-a-sheet-of-paper so we must rush through this early footage of her being defeated.   Her rescue of everyone in the last movie was all for naught.  Seriously, these movies are not about the human and zombie fodder, they are all about Milla / Alice.

So, again Alice is escaping an Umbrella underground facility dressed only in the Aeon Flux outfit (paper sheets don't stand up to gunfire) Umbrella gave her to wear.  This time there is a twist as  the facility is under water, not underground !!  Plot summary: fight way to surface through various staged environments representing Moscow, NYC, the suburbs from Dawn of the Dead and Tokyo.  Along the way she will meet other characters from the video games acted in astoundingly bad fashion as well as clones of characters from previous movies, good clones and bad clones, again acted oh so sweetly bad. With each movie, less sense is made, all condensing down into a handful of beautifully choreographed combat sequences.  Anderson does know how to craft a lovely gunfight scene and probably feels beholden to stitch some sort of loose plot together to hold the scenes.  Besides, I would probably watch Milla just play golf.